The first step is just acknowledging that you’re ready. From there, decide how and where you want to try to meet people. Dating apps have been around for multiple decades, which means they are the norm and definitely not a last resort.
You’ll also want to be direct with what you’re looking for. Serious relationship? Casual hookup? A friendship that might lead to more? Whatever it is, be upfront because you don’t want to fall for someone only to realize you aren’t looking for the same thing. Yes, it’s more vulnerable to say exactly what you want, but being straightforward from the outset is the new dating norm.
As in any phase of life, dating takes time and patience. We spoke to Jennifer Frazier, a 46-year-old based in Indiana, who met someone awesome on Match. They went on a few dates and she really liked him, but he was interested in dating a lot of women at the same time, and though Frazier enjoyed his company, she realized that kind of a relationship wasn’t for her.
Dating in your 40s, 50s, 60s, or older can feel lonely when all your friends are married or in relationships. If you want to find a community of people experiencing the same things as you, we recommend visiting the subreddit r/datingoverforty – it’s full of people sharing stories of success, heartbreak, bad dates, good dates, and more. Just go in aware that most dating subreddits tend to skew slightly on the pessimistic side.
While Frazier says the stigma around dating sites with the over-40 crowd is mostly gone, she doesn’t think a lot of single men in her area are using these sites, so she’s experiencing fewer options. She also thinks location plays a big part in how successful dating apps will be for a person, and we agree. Typically, the bigger the city, the easier it’ll be to find a date. Frazier, for example, has a smaller pool of people in Indiana compared to someone who lives in New York or Chicago.
«It’s hard to find a night off from cooking, driving kids, and all the other things we are responsible for.»
«I love the idea of Bumble because it gives women the power to send the first message,» Frazier says. «There were only about four men in my age range within 25 miles, though, so that was disappointing.»
Frazier also says having a family can get in the way of dating because you might have kids to take care of and taking time off from parent duty isn’t always easy.
«It’s hard to find a night off from cooking, driving kids, and all the other things we are responsible for,» she says. «I have faced pressure from men I have not even met who are being demanding of my time. I have enough demands without adding to it.»
By the way, if someone is being demanding of your time and pushing to meet up right away, we want to remind you that it’s OK to say no.
While Frazier hasn’t had the most success with dating apps, she does know a lot of people who have – her sister-in-law met her boyfriend on Tinder. When doing research for this article, a couple of friends told me their mom, or uncle, or other family member met their significant other on a dating app.
According to Pew Research Center, 57 percent of online daters describe their overall experience as positive. A lot of factors add up to whether online dating will be successful for you. Some apps use super in-depth compatibility quizzes that lead to really specific matches, where others just present you with a bunch of singles in your area within your specified age range. Both have their perks.